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Saving the Sunshine State

By Joanna Grey

Six women who left their mark on Florida’s history will be featured in the Matheson History Museum’s new exhibition, Saving the Sunshine State: Women Leaders in the Twentieth Century. The exhibit runs from September 1 to October 31. These six women all worked to improve Florida and the lives of its citizens in areas such as conservation, civil rights, writing, education and suffrage.

May Mann Jennings (1872-1963) – A Florida first lady and wife of the 18th governor of Florida, May Mann Jennings championed such causes as women’s suffrage, education funding, historic preservation and highway beautification.

Zora Neale Hurston (1891-1960) – Hurston was born in Alabama but was raised in Eatonville, Florida. She was a part of the Harlem Renaissance and was one of the most widely published African American woman writers and anthropologists of the twentieth century.

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